One of the joys of online gaming is that you get to express how you feel through various means other than words. Fortnite is not exempt from that. Unfortunately, the latter is only limited with to avatar. It also doesn’t help that there’s no Fortnite tracker for it. However, with Epic’s newly acquired company, HyprSense, you can now express it in more ways than one!
In Time for the Party
Before we get to that, we need to first discuss a brand new feature in the game: Party Royale. As its name suggests, it’s meant to be a virtual social space within the confines of Fortnite. It’s meant to be a lounge that serves as a break from the shooting and where you can just chill and mingle with other players.
Mind you, it’s not just an empty area where players just do random things. Rather, Party Royale is an island that has a club, race courses, a soccer field, a pirate ship, and even a movie theater. Remember a few months ago, at the height of the CoViD-19 pandemic, when they decided to show a trailer of Christopher Nolan’s Tenet? It was the first but it definitely won’t be the last. And who knows? Maybe we’ll see full-length features, now that the game has a safe space for them!
It should go without saying that there are lots of things to do in this new slice of content; a game within a game, if you will. And Epic promises even more things to do in the future, as they claim that it is going to be an “evolving space”. Whether Epic is going to simply have new content as additional things to do or will cycle them in or out remains to be seen. However, given the fact that online games have always had ever-changing content, either adding or changing them up from time to time seem par for the course.
Lastly, this is where in-game events are going to take place. Remember the Rocket Launch? Well, not everybody managed to enjoy that, as some people preferred to blast others using Fortnite weapons than watch some virtual flying thing that isn’t even a part of the game. All is fair in love, war, and Battle Royale, so no surprise they did that.
But now, with Party Royale, players that simply want to enjoy in-game events like this can rest assured that they will not be killed for choosing to take such experiences in, as Party Royale is going to be a killing-free zone.
Showing Others How You Feel
So, where does Hyprsense come into all of this? Well, in Party Royale. Save for a very few short moments with your teammates, you won’t have much use for emotional expression. The stark contrast to that is in Party Royale, where all the interacting with other players you’ll be doing will greatly benefit from you having the ability to express a wider range of emotions, and that’s where Hyprsense comes in. With their tech, you get to show others what you feel in real-time without the need or the limitation of words.
Before the company was bought by Epic Games, it launched an app called Hyprmeet. Think of it as Zoom, except you get to create and modify your own avatar, which you then use to talk to other users, who in turn are also represented by their own avatar.
Epic Games has no interest in making a digital room where users are limited to seeing other people’s faces, considering that Fortnite Royale, and especially Party Royale, are way more ambitious. Rather, Epic seems to be interested in being able to capture their players’ facial expressions, and this is a simple, affordable (well, if you’re a billion-dollar company that has launched a global phenomenon, then this can be considered as such), and effective means of doing so.
Battle Versus Party Royale
The question, however, is how big Party Royale is going to be, as its size and popularity among the players will determine whether their acquisition of Hyprsense is going to be a huge part of Fortnite’s future or not.
Ironically, the biggest hindrance to Party Royale’s success and expansion would be the nature of the game itself. A vast majority of players didn’t pick the game up to socialize, but to have chicken dinners. Nevertheless, given how Epic managed to make the game a cultural phenomenon, it shouldn’t be a surprise if they manage to balance Party Royale and the main game, and even find a way to make the two as important. That way, motion capture facial expressions will have its relevance.
Heck, even if it doesn’t, Epic will surely find a use for the tech. After all, they’re not just about Fortnite now. Much like Riot, they may have a long-time cash cow now, but they’ll have a new title soon enough; maybe they can use it there. Plus, have an entire store that rivals Steam; there’s so much they can apply it to. Lastly, even if all of that doesn’t pan out, players’ avatars mimicking their emotions not just in Party Royale but also in the main game would be pretty cool. Another way to mock other players, I should say.
So, what do you think? Is motion capture emotes going to be a big thing in Fortnite’s future, or is it just going to be a gimmick? Tell us what you foresee in the comments section.